Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Trizonna McClendon - NewFamiliar - 2010 - 4 The Soul

Real soul for 2010 out of Chicago! Trizonna McClendon is a brand new name to me, but it's hearing new artists making music of this caliber - and out of America too! - that warms the cockles of my heart. Trizonna McClendon poses with a very pensive expression on the front cover, but open up the CD case she allows herself a smile, and so she should. Her music certainly should be worthy of a smile as she has talent in abundance, soul overflowing and a fresh approach to soul music...the name of the set, "NewFamiliar" is definitely an apt one. I am reminded of Vertical Hold's wonderful "Head First" album on the first song, the title track and I was instantly hooked. I am so pleased to hear such quality coming out of the US. A funkier, southern approach a la N'Dambi can be found within the confines of "Didn't See It Comin'" and the funky guitar and horns are especially welcome.

The SOS Band-ish "Shatter Proof" enjoys some 2010 synth additions, but the good old 808 drum machine remains powerful and so smooth is Trizonna's vocal delivery that I forget about the synth. Adopting a loose, fluid style not far removed from the Everyday People project, "Excuses" makes great headway and the 60s organ sits neatly with the Sheree Brown-like acoustic guitar and warm summer flow. "Find My Way" is an interesting song - a shuffling gait, resonant synths and a haunting key refrain makes this an aurally captivating song. Deep, slightly dark yet haunting. This is different, but nicely different! I think that Gary Taylor was an inspiration for the SUPERB "Love Divine"...Trizonna McClendon and producer Preston Glass have dipped heavily into the Taylor feeling and even the haunting muted trumpet smacks of Gary Taylor! I cannot stop playing this song, and anyone with an ounce of soul in their body should feel the same about it! I also recommend the excellent "Alright" and unashamedly 80s "Love Electric" - if you are a fan of James Reeno then this electro soul groove is just for you! This, my friends, is a highly recommended CD!

Barry Towler
The Vibe Scribe